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Macrophytes as bioindicators of heavy metal pollution in estuarine and coastal environments

Farias, DR, Hurd, CL ORCID: 0000-0001-9965-4917, Eriksen, RS ORCID: 0000-0002-5184-2465 and Macleod, CK ORCID: 0000-0002-0539-6361 2018 , 'Macrophytes as bioindicators of heavy metal pollution in estuarine and coastal environments' , Marine Pollution Bulletin, vol. 128 , pp. 175-184 , doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2018.01.023.

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The Derwent estuary, in Tasmania (Australia), is highly contaminated with heavy metals with significant levels in both sediments and benthic fauna. However, little is known about metal content in benthic primary producers. We characterized metal content (Arsenic, Cadmium, Copper, Lead, Selenium and Zinc) in twelve species of macrophyte, including red, green, and brown algae, and seagrasses, from the Derwent. The metals, arsenic, copper, lead, and Zinc were detected in all of the macrophytes assessed, but the levels differed between species. Seagrasses accumulated the highest concentrations of all metals; with Zn levels being particularly high in the seagrass Ruppia megacarpa (from the upper Estuary) and Pb was detected in Zostera muelleri (from the middle estuary). Ulva australis was ubiquitous throughout the middle-lower estuary and accumulated Zn in relatively high concentrations. The findings suggest that analysis of multiple species may be necessary for a comprehensive understanding of estuary-wide metal pollution.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Farias, DR and Hurd, CL and Eriksen, RS and Macleod, CK
Keywords: heavy metals, pollution, bio-monitoring, seaweed, seagrass
Journal or Publication Title: Marine Pollution Bulletin
Publisher: Pergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd
ISSN: 0025-326X
DOI / ID Number: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2018.01.023
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2018 Elsevier Ltd.

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